On October 19, 2015, the students of Woodlake Elementary School had a special treat as April Nelson, 2015 Miss Louisiana, came to speak to the school. While April spoke, I thought of the song, “Children Will Listen,” from Into the Woods. The students were hanging on her every word.
As a former Woodlake Elementary School student, April shared her memories of being at the school. She also spoke to the students about her platform, “Improving Others through U”. While encouraging the students to serve others, she spoke about how she learned at a young age to use her musical talents to help the community. Although I did not have the opportunity to teach April, I was also inspired by her visit. As a teacher, it is my job to help my students find their special talents so that they can use their talents to change the world.
Following her presentation, I had the opportunity to speak with April. We talked about our experiences as being a representative for the state of Louisiana, and our experiences with the Miss America organization. My sister, Beth Stomps Feller, was named Miss Alabama in 1997. Like April, Beth was a vocalist that majored in musical theater. Beth now serves as a volunteer for the Miss Alabama program, performs in Community Theater, and works as a pharmaceutical representative. After our meeting, I thought about how Beth, April, and I have each had our lives transformed through music. As my first class walked in to the music room, I was grateful that I get to have the opportunity to share the power of music with my students.